“So Drew tells me you have Fire Emblem Fates. I’m thinking of getting a 3DS and I enjoyed playing the Fire Emblem Gameboy Advance titles, so I’m wondering if it’s worth getting. You seem to be articulate when it comes to this stuff.”
I got that message from a friend of mine who as you can probably gather is considering getting a 3DS for Fire Emblem Fates. In particular, the bundle he’s looking at comes with all three Fates titles. I explained what I thought about his decisions, and he asked if I had any more reviews of 3DS title in general. Now, I had written some 3DS reviews back in the day for different blogs, but I wasn’t about to dig those up with this site now being the priority. But it occurs to me that he’s not the only one to come to me and ask about game recommendations for the 3DS. Several of my friends are looking to get 3DS systems for at least one particular game and are looking for others titles to justify the system’s cost. So I figured, why not write a blog post about it.
The following blurbs are recommendations and micro-reviews to the games that I think (almost) every Nintendo 3DS owner will love (note: the author doesn’t guarantee love, because what is love really).
Fire Emblem Awakening
Now while my friend was asking about whether or not Fire Emblem Fates was worth getting, I responded that while Fates is certainly a great game to play, Fire Emblem Awakening is the title that I would recommend to anyone with a 3DS. At the time, Awakening brought significant changes to the franchise and has set a standard that Fates continues to this day. With a fantastic story, amazing gameplay, and an unforgettable cast of characters, Fire Emblem Awakening is the definitive Fire Emblem experience and will be a blast for both fans of the franchise and those who’ve never played an FE game before.
Animal Crossing: New Leaf
Before playing New Leaf, the Animal Crossing series was an example of a franchise that I loved when I played it on the GameCube, but a series of similar titles meant that I wasn’t getting the same pleasure out of it. That all changed when I got my hands on New Leaf. As the name implies, there’s a lot of changes to the formula you expect if you’ve played the earlier titles. Since you’re the mayor of your new animal town, you have a lot of say as to what happens in the game, and that’s part of what New Leaf so much fun. By taking a more proactive role in your town you can truly shape it to your desires, and the game also cuts a lot of the fat that hindered the earlier titles from being great. If you’ve played earlier animal crossing games or don’t even know who Tom Nook is, you might be surprised how much fun you’ll have in this slightly surreal in real time life-simulator.
What at first glance appears to be a simple Final Fantasy spin-off, Bravely Default’s use of JRPG tropes allows it to take both franchise and genre conventions and spin them on their head. There’s a lot to love about Bravely Default, the amazing combat, the fantastic job system, and the incredible soundtrack. I’m hesitant to give it a must buy as the last portion of the game is where it falls apart. But if you’re at all a fan of JRPGs and haven’t played Bravely Default, you’re missing out. Plus the sequel, Bravely Second, is coming out in the west this year, so you got to be prepared for that right?
The Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time 3D & Majora’s Mask 3D
While the 3DS is home to lots of ports of N64 games, the two Legend of Zelda titles are special in that in their own right are games in that they are required reading (playing?) for any gamer. Acquiring an N64 these days is sometimes an expensive experience, so what better way to experience gaming history than to play the updated versions with your 3DS. The only thing that’s changed is the graphics; everything else is just the same as it was back in the golden days of the N64. If you had to pick one, go with Ocarina of Time. But if you can get both you should make the purchase.
Pokemon X & Y
Perhaps the most fun I’ve had playing a new Pokemon title since Gold and Silver for the Gameboy Color, Pokemon X & Y are incredibly fun to play. Finally bringing Pokemon into the third-dimension, X & Y represent a milestone in the franchise’s history. While each generation has obviously brought changes with every iteration, Gen 6 brings changes that make the overall gameplay experience a far more efficient and pleasing experience.
Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow
Do I really need to explain myself? If you haven’t played the original Pokemon titles, then you need to fix that. Plus they’re fantastic value with hours of gameplay for about a quarter of what you would pay for a 3DS game today.
Super Smash Brothers for 3DS
While it might seem like a portable Smash Bros. experience might seem like a far cry from the Wii U version, the 3DS version manages to capture the console experience and present in a way that makes “smashing” on the go a ton of fun. Plus there’s nothing more satisfying than killing time with friends than beating the crap out of little mac. If you have the Wii U version, the experience is complemented by 3DS version rather than
There are a lot more games that I could list, some of which I haven’t played myself but have heard great things from friends who have. But these stand as the games that I think define the amazing range of titles for the Nintendo 3DS. So if you’re curious about any of these, be sure to pick them up. They can also be downloaded through the Nintendo eShop, so not being able to find a physical copy is no excuse to the experience games that even put some of the consoles to shame.